Episode 108: Dennis Schleicher, Gay LDS Convert, Author, National Personality
My friend Dennis shares his life story including life as a gay man (including appearances of Larry King Live and Sally Jessy Raphel), joining the Church in 2017, and now serving as the Ward Mission Leader and helping missionaries church wide on LGBTQ issues.
Dennis’ book ‘Is He Nuts, Why a Gay Man Would Become a Member of the Church of Jesus Christ’ is being released by church book publisher Cedar Fort in August 2019. I encourage everyone to read his book (for more information go to www.DennisSchleicher.net).
Thank you, Dennis, for sharing your story. You are one of the most courageous persons I know. Thanks for blessing 1000s
Missionaries are awesome! Meet a few I’ve worked with.
I am an openly gay man who feels nothing but love from members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I was told my entire life that God rejected me and I was going to hell merely for my sexual orientation. I needed to change my entire persona and become straight. This left such a bad taste in my mouth about organized religion in general that I refused to attend any church for many, many years.
It was Latter-day Saints who taught me that Heavenly Father loves ALL of His children, regardless of their sexual orientation. We are all children of God, and we should leave judgment to the Savior. It is not our place. We are asked only to love. Let’s all Turn Up The Love.
A message I received from a missionaries companion on a lesson she learned
“Hi, Dennis! I’m the one who commented on Stephanie’s post! I just thought I would share my experience. It’s nothing spectacular
compared to your’s and Sister Guimaras’ and I’m honestly a little embarrassed by it but I learned a valuable lesson. I was training Sister Guimaras at the time (which she really didn’t need training) but there was this idea that trainers set the tones for the rest of their trainee’s mission. I was so stressed out because I felt that I needed to teach her something and as I said, she didn’t need any kind of training. Seriously I learned more than I taught. I believe you came in at the end of the day and I was so exhausted and frankly glad it was Sister Guimaras’ “turn” to give a tour. I overheard you and your friends talking and I thought that it would be an interesting tour. Typically people who were not of our faith who came into the sites during the summer months were “antis” and had no intention of hearing us out. When Sister Guimaras came back she spoke of her experience and the Spirit that was felt. I learned how important it is to interact with people because you never know who you are going to meet or what experiences you are going to have just because you are too tired or too busy or whatever the excuse is. I know that I never actually got to meet you, but I have heard about your spiritual journey and I just think that is so incredible.”
This is probably the first encounter I had with Latter-day Saints except for the poor missionaries who had my door repeatedly slammed in their faces. Yep! That was the old Dennis.
Life just keeps getting more exciting by the minute. Just found out the Missionaries I randomly met at the airport on June 21, 2017 (almost 2 months before my baptism) Will be attending the celebration launch, 🚀 at this time did I ever think I would be baptized? NOT, and look at where we’ve gone. Yippee, Can’t wait to see Sister Franks & Morris.
I believe the Oscar goes to all church missionaries
Miracles do Happen
Now look; I’m a Ward Mission Leader, YES miracles can and do happen.
Day of Blessings That Never Stops
First thing this morning, my father was scheduled for a knee replacement. I was feeling nervous. All I could do was pray and give it to God.
Today is P–Day for Missionaries, which means they are given nine hours a week that they’re allowed to fill their private time i.e. grocery shopping, laundry, emailing their parents and so on. The Manchester Sister’s had asked me if I would do a home teaching at 12 PM with someone looking into our church. WOW, talk about dedication. After that was over, I had to go to the hospital to sit with my mom and wait for my father’s surgery to be completed.
Excruciating, as it took longer than expected. Again all I could do was just pray and give it to God.
After texting the Hartford Elders “Spanish speaking missionaries,” to assist in offering my father a blessing after his surgery, they arrived at the hospital around 7 PM. I asked one elder if he would seal the oil, and the other to provide the blessing as I felt compelled they needed to do this and I would just partake in the laying of the hands.
WOW!!! The Holy Ghost never lets you down, as the presence was felt throughout the entire room. I could not believe right in front of my very own eyes for the first time my father was allowing “The Mormons,” to perform a blessing. Dad was so polite afterward, he thanked everyone for the blessing.
I didn’t realize the elders were without a car and I had asked politely if I could give them a ride to their next appointment for 8 PM. This goes against my rules, (avoid the appearance of evil) unless I have another senior elder present. Well, I just blurted out; You know I’ll do anything for you guys.
Everything happens for a reason. When I was dropping them off at their appointment, I realized they were going to have to walk home afterward. 4 miles in the frigid cold. I asked if they wanted me to stay for the lesson and they said sure we really could use you.
They shared that the three people we were teaching were baptized into the church three years ago and had stopped attending church quite some time ago. They were all teenagers, their mother was not a member, but their grandmother was.
They offered a prayer in my car prior to walking into the house. During that prayer, I started to feel the promptings to bring up missionary work. When meeting with the elders, I offered an opening prayer, again I was prompted to talk about some of the blessings the elders have received serving as full-time missionaries. I asked the three of them; “have you ever considered going on a mission?” That was it! I had hit the nail on the head. At first, they were a little hesitant and then the
entire conversation turned to how amazing it would be for them to serve as full-time missionaries when two of them graduate school in June.
Driving the Elders back to their apartment just before curfew, they couldn’t believe how powerful the message was felt by all. This goes to show when you have faith and rely on the Holy Ghost, anything is possible, anything can happen.
I’m A Gay Mormon Convert – WHAT? That’s what they say!
Yep, who knew? On Aug 19th, 2017 I chose to become a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as an openly gay convert. Am I nuts?
Why What, How could you do that to the LGBT community?
This is the story of my search for God’s love in my life, and how I found it with and through The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Despite a reputation that says otherwise, members of The #ChurchOfJesusChrist of #Latter-daySaints or #LDS, they do in fact love and accept all people just as Christ would, regardless of their sexual orientation.
I am an openly gay man who feels nothing but love from members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I was told my entire life that God rejected me and I was going to Hell merely for my sexual orientation. I needed to change my entire persona and become straight. This left such a bad taste in my mouth about organized religion in general, that I refused to attend any church, for many, many years.
It was Latter-day Saints who taught me that Heavenly Father loves ALL of His children, regardless of their sexual orientation. We are all children of God, and we should leave judgment to the Savior. It is not our place. We are asked only to love. #TurnUpTheLove
My goals in writing this blog are to convey that we need more love in this world, more acceptance of all, and we need more happiness. I challenge you to choose love, no matter what race, nationality, whether you’re heterosexual, or someone like myself, who is 100% gay and a member of the LGBT+ Community and also a full temple recommend holder in good standing with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I’m serving as a Ward Mission Leader helping sisters and elder missionaries all over the world sharing the gospel of Christ as he does love each and every one of us despite our imperfections, as no one’s perfect.
I’m not nuts or crazy for joining the church. After all, isn’t everyone a little nuts? Choose love, choose kindness, and most importantly, we all need to #TurnUpTheLove.